Robin Hatch is a Canadian keyboardist and composer who navigates a myriad of musical styles with ease. (For proof of this, visit her Instagram account below where she tackles jazz, funk, and spoof pop covers complete with barking dog samples)! Get to know our final TALENT SCOUT Artist of the Week for 2018!

NAME: Robin Hatch

HOMETOWN: Toronto, Canada.

MUSICAL TRAINING: When I was 5, a music teacher pointed out that I had absolute pitch so that got me in classical piano lessons pretty early, which I studied until the end of high school. I got a B.A. in English and Music History at the University of Toronto, then I started playing piano at the Second City Training Centre. I went back to private classical lessons for a few years, then studied jazz with Hilario Durán.

FIRST GIGS: I was in Sheezer, an all-female Weezer cover band, and a few classic rock and soul cover bands. I toured with the rock band Our Lady Peace for five years, and played briefly in the indie folk trio Rural Alberta Advantage.

MUSICAL INFLUENCES: The West Side Story score has stuck with me my whole life. I'm a big fan of Steely Dan, ELP, Yes, and Sun Ra. Bill Evans, Martha Argerich, and Oscar Peterson have had the most influence on my playing.

WHAT I’M LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW: I'm in a bit of a Neil Finn hole lately. My favorite album of the past year was August Greene's self-titled record, and Brad Mehldau's After Bach definitely kept my ego in check.

MY BIG BREAK: I got a fluke voicemail in February of 2012 from Raine Maida, the singer of Our Lady Peace, asking me to play keys on their upcoming tour. I left on the road with them three weeks later.

Photo by Colin Medley

Photo by Colin Medley

LATEST PROJECTS: In November, I wrote and produced a solo classical album during a 3-week residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Half the songs are improvisations I transcribed and re-learned, and the other half were short melodies I just worked out on sheet music and extrapolated on with some sort of cinematic idea in mind. Right now I'm finalizing mixes with Chris Sandes at Palace Sound in Toronto, and it'll be out sometime in February or March.

FAVORITE KEYBOARDS AND WHY? I had a Roland Organ/Strings RS-09 for awhile, and I still think about it a lot. I appreciate the relative simplicity of the parameters on those early Roland string synths; they sound really warm and sparkly no matter what they are plugged into. For current keyboards, the Nord Stages/Electros are my go-to especially for quick live performance prep. I like all their online user banks a lot. I love my DSI Prophet 12, but I'm still trying to get a grasp on all the calculus of real synthesis. My secret weapon is the Roland Juno-Gi.

WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? The plan is to do some solo touring in 2019, probably just in Ontario but maybe out to the east coast of Canada. I'm always on the search for different backing gigs. At the moment I've got a handful of Canadian dates in February playing in the band Whitehorse, in support of their new album, and hoping they'll get me on the U.S. leg as well.

ADVICE TO THE NEXT GENERATION: Read "The Music Lesson" by Victor Wooten.

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